The History of UTSA: Resources

The following resources offer a general introduction into the history of UTSA.

Archival Collections (General)

UTSA General Information and University History Records, 1967-2009
This collection documents general administrative actions of the university, including the establishment of academic programs and construction. Scrapbooks feature news clippings of UTSA's development from 1969 through 1974. Audiovisual materials include sound recordings of early commencement exercises, as well as an explanation of a time capsule buried in 1983.
(Image: "Academic Programs and Documentation" document, circa 1970.)

The UTSA University Publications Collection, 1973-2009
The University Archives holds copies of university publications including newsletters/magazines (The Discourse, UTSA Bulletin, Roadrunner, Sombrilla, UTSA Update, @UTSA, and others), course catalogs and class schedules, faculty and staff directories, student directories, faculty handbooks, and some departmental publications. Contact the University Archivist to inquire about specific holdings.

(Image: Roadrunner vol. 19, no. 22 (February 1990)

UTSA University Communications Records, 1972-2003
This collection comprises daily press releases and newspaper clippings collected by University Communications documenting news coverage of UTSA from 1972 through 2003. Featured in this collection are television commercials from 1977 advertising the new university.
(Image: news release, February 7, 1973.)


Photograph Collections

Gil Barrera Photographs of UTSA, 1972-1978
Gil Barrera was a freelance photographer who was employed by UTSA to photograph its building and organization from 1972 to 1978. The collection consists of photographic negatives and contact sheets. Among the subjects represented in the collection are construction projects, ceremonies, graduating classes, concerts, distinguished visitors, conference participants, students, professors, and members of the University of Texas administration and Board of Regents.
(Image: UTSA under construction, September 18, 1974)

UTSA University Communications Photographs, 1972-2001
The Office of University Communications was responsible for all official UTSA photography. This collection includes photographs, negatives, contact prints, and slides of people (students, faculty, and staff), buildings and campus grounds, colleges, events, and objects.
(Image: Rowdy the Roadrunner with Fiesta Queens, April 16, 1993)

For more University Archives collections, see University Archives Holdings: What We Collect.

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The Top Shelf Blog: Category: UTSA History
The Top Shelf, the blog of the Special Collections department, features monthly articles on various topics in UTSA's history. Past topics have included the election of the roadrunner as the school mascot, the school colors, the first Fiesta UTSA, the opening of the John Peace Library, and the evolution of UTSA's HemisFair Park campus.

UTSA Yesterday
"This Week in UTSA History": UTSA Yesterday features press releases, news clips, and photographs of UTSA beginning in 1973, when the university opened to students. The University Archives can be found on Twitter at:

Twitter is a communication tool that allows interested individuals to "follow" or subscribe to a message feed. Twitter messages, which often consist of a single sentence or idea, are delivered to followers (usually to their mobile devices) in a manner similar to instant messages.

Other UTSA History Sites

  • About UTSA: History
    • This page, maintained by the UTSA Public Affairs Office, offers a basic timeline of key events in UTSA's history.
  • Roadrunner Spirit
    • This page, maintained by the Office of Student Activities, offers brief facts about the university, including a list of "UTSA Firsts."
  • UTSA Uncovered
    • This web-archived page hosts a web version of alumnus James Pinkard's book UTSA Uncovered, which tells an informal history of the university including stories and folklore he collected as a UTSA student.